Gwen Tuinman




Women’s History Month: Media Stereotypes Defied

Millions of women have shaped our world, but there’s limited representation of them in historical archives. These invisible women—who span differing ethnicities, regional economies, social statuses and age groups—have been reduced to passive bystanders in society.

In the essay collection The Western Women, one researcher describes how historical women been painted over with three stereotypes popularized through movies and novels. Since March is Women’s History Month, let’s look at women who defy each stereotype.

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Choosing Well

In 2011, I watched a TEDTalk entitled Stories Cut from Paper in which renowned paper artist Béatrice Coron discussed process and inspiration. Projected on the screen behind her was “Hells and Heavens”, an intricate and sprawling piece that had been exhibited at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City. I marvelled at the individual yet connected stories she’d envisioned and brought to life. How did she lay her vision on the paper without losing sight of perspective and skewing the images?

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Walking the Forest with Whitman

I find pleasure in revisiting an autumn reflection I wrote as the finish line to completing my manuscript for “The Last Hoffman” drew near. The forest is everything. But it’s even sweeter with Walt Whitman’s verses in hand.

Gwen Tuinman


I recently pushed away from my desk in favour of a walk in the forest with Whitman. The deadline to finish my novel looms, but a part of me called out the restorative time in nature. The October air was cool against my cheek that day and the earthy smell of fallen leaves ever present. The sumacs had turned blood red and the poplar leaves became shimmering coins against the sky.

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